Nursing homes in Illinois are always vigilant in protecting residents and staff from communicable diseases like COVID-19. We will keep this page updated with helpful resources and the latest information from public health officials.
The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.
The virus is thought to spread through person-to-person contact, typically within 6 feet of one another.
When an infected person coughs or sneezes, respiratory droplets can spread to the mouth or noses of nearby people.
Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth to prevent any type of virus from entering your body.
Cover your mouth and nose with a bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze; dispose of the used tissue immediately.
Stay home when you’re sick.
Protect your facility
Communicate with physician, local health department, regulatory agency, families, staff and residents.
Processes and activities which increase residents’ risk should be modified or suspended.
Immediately inform the local health department and IDPH of symptomatic residents to determine if COVID19 testing is indicated. Once a positive case is identified in a facility, no additional testing is needed in either residents or staff.
Stop large group congregate activities and provide alternatives (arrange in room dining or dining that maintains social distancing and activities, stop bingo, beauty shop, outside volunteer presentations, church, etc.)
If not already being performed, begin screening all residents and staff including temperature checks and use of checklists to identify symptomatic individuals.
Inform staff to stay home when sick insuring non-punitive practices during this period. Screen all staff prior to shift for temperature and respiratory symptoms. If present staff member should be sent home until symptoms resolve.
Focus on decreased staff rotation and cohort staff to work with symptomatic residents whenever possible.
Ensure staff are educated on and correctly performing hand hygiene, donning and doffing of PPE, and using appropriate products for environmental cleansing/disinfection.
Ensure adequate supplies of PPE are easily accessible to staff.
Post signage for Hand hygiene and cough etiquette, ensure necessary supplies to accomplish these tasks are present at all entries and patient care areas. Notify all residents, staff, visitor and families of current situation.
Visitation should be restricted to essential individuals. All visitors should be informed of risk and instructed on proper PPE use prior to entering unit. Other avenues of communication with family should be explored (i.e., face time, skype, etc.).
Identify additional isolation rooms limiting to single unit if possible, cohort like cases if necessary (i.g., influenza with influenza, COVID19 with COVID19, etc.).
HCCI provides material for informational purposes only. The material provided herein is general and is not intended to be legal advice.